BY MANUEL L. CABALLERO
"AND HE SHALL REIGN FOR EVER AND EVER...HALLELUJAH"; MERRY CHRISTMAS TO THE ROBREDOS IN THE US
It's the week before Christmas. MERRY CHRISTMAS to all readers of "On My Watch".
We also extend Christmas greetings to the Robredos who are spending the Holidays with relatives in NJ.
Our subject is about the 281-year-old oratorio, (extensive musical work intended for voice and orchestra) titled Messiah.
Messiah is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 by George Frideric Handel. The text was compiled from the King James Bible and the Coverdale Psalter by Charles Jennens. It was first performed in Dublin in 1742 and received its London premiere nearly a year later. (Wikipedia).
The 260-page Messiah has 3 parts. First part is the Nativity or the birth of Jesus. Second part is about the Crucifixion and Resurrection. The 3rd part is the relevance of the⁰ oratorio Messiah to Christianity.
Part of this oratorio is Hallelujah, a choir song that has been popular for over 200 years.
Last night, I watched Messiah at the famed Carnegie Hall in New York City. The concert was organized by the Oratorio Society of New York.
The performers were world- class. There were around 150 choir singers, about 40 symphony musicians including the conductor and 4 soloists.
As in any Messiah concert, the most enjoyed was the choir singing of Hallelujah. Some of you (I didn't) might be aware that the audience stands up once this piece is sung. (There is a story why. That during the first Messiah concert in London, King Charles, who was in the audience, stood up in awe when the choir sang Hallelujah. Out of respect for the King, the people in the audience reportedly stood up also. It became a practice since).
At the end of last night's concert, the performers were given standing ovation for 15 minutes.
The concert was an awesome introduction to Christmas.
Again, have a Merry Christmas, folks! Let's prepare for the birth of the King of Kings who, as the oratorio says, "shall reign for ever and ever." Hallelujah!